Who's In It: Gwyneth Paltrow, Tim McGraw, Garrett Hedlund, Leighton Meester
The Basics: Booze-and-pills combustion engine Kelly Cantor (Paltrow) is the Neely O'Hara of country music. (Google that name, young people.) She's got six Grammys, a relentlessly driven husband-manager (McGraw) who pulls her out of rehab early to get back on the road, a sort-of boyfriend in rising country star Beau (Hedlund) and a young Taylor Swiftian upstart (Meester) breathing down her neck. The rational response to these personal and professional complications? Spend a lot of time screeching, weeping until the eyeliner runs down your face--even at a Make-a-Wish photo op--and disappearing with a bottle of vodka before being found dancing and hooting on a bar for some bikers.
What's The Deal: There's a lot to like about this dumb movie. It's got enough melodrama and full-volume diva-meltdown histrionics to blow a movie like Burlesque out of the water. And as any lover of druggie cliche cinema will tell you, that stuff is never not funny. The very best scenes here involve watching princessy Paltrow in hysterics, rolling around on the floor, grabbing for a bottle of booze and being mean to Leighton Meester (who's got enough of a case of mean-face herself to make you think she deserves it). It's almost as crazy as watching Mindy McCready on Celebrity Rehab.
Most Awesomest Running Gag: There's this wounded baby bird, see, and Paltrow finds the damaged little metaphor while in detox, puts it in a box and then, because she's still too drunk most of the time and knows she would probably just leave it in the street somewhere, hands it over to husband McGraw to nurse back to health. Then he spends the rest of the movie carrying around a box with a baby bird in it. No, I'm not exaggerating this at all. It's great. They even name it Loretta Lynn.
What's Genuinely Not Terrible: Garrett Hedlund is all Brad Pitt in Thelma and Louise here. He's charismatic and earnest and delivers even the dopiest dialogue like he really means it. And the original songs are genuinely good, deserving of a way better movie to be in. When the focus is on the music--and everyone in the cast performs without needing to lip-sync to someone else's vocals--it turns into an entirely different movie, one you can love without trying to suppress your laughter.